Creatures Of The Night review by KISS

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Released: Oct 10, 1982
  • Sound: 10
  • Lyrics: 9
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 9.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.4 (25 votes)
KISS: Creatures Of The Night
1

Sound — 10
This is probably the most underrated KISS album, and one of the most underrated rock albums overall. The reason is most likely because Ace Frehley didn't actually play on it, and because it was the third without Peter Criss. But don't leave yet, because it has something we don't usually get on a KISS album: Hard rock and metal on every track. Word of warning though, if you hate 80's hair metal to death, don't buy it, because "Creatures" is a straight-up hair metal album. But even though KISS had to rely on a handful of different session musicians, the sound is thunderous and the solos are face-melting as a good KISS has, except times ten. When you hear the first riff you'll think you got a mislabeled CD, but fear not, it is KISS, but just going farther than they've ever gone before in the heaviness department (which is probably a result of the exceptional drumming talents of Eric Carr).

Lyrics — 9
The lyrics are typical of KISS album; they aren't very deep, and there are probably innuendos in there somewhere that I haven't caught yet. But they work and they're catchy as usual, especially on the track "I Love It Loud" which has become a popular KISS song over the years. Paul Stanley is as great a singer as ever, and Gene Simmons sings the lower-keyed tracks with passion. However, it seems that just when Ace Frehley got enough guts to let us hear his voice, he took his Alice Cooper-esque vocal talents away from KISS along with his even more famous guitar skills, and there is a definite hole in this album where the Spaceman's songwriting should be.

Overall Impression — 9
This is probably one of the top 5 best KISS albums to date, and probably my personal favorite. The title track "Creatures Of The Night" is a superb full-throttle rocker. "Keep Me Coming" has a hint of KISS' pop and rock 'n roll history embedded while "Rock And Roll Hell" and "War Machine" are head-banging metal anthems. "Saint And Sinner" captures the trademark hard rock sound we've come to love from KISS. The least impressive song is the power ballad "I Still Love You" which lasts a long 6 minutes... Far more than it needs. Also, the archetypal 80's guitar sound takes a little getting used to on a KISS album. Even if you're the most hardcore Ace Frehley fan you'll find something to like here. This album shows how good KISS really are despite the setbacks of members leaving. Give this album a try, even if you haven't heard much about it before. I love it so much I listened to it three times in one day.

YouTube preview picture

11 comments sorted by best / new / date

    sn00ze
    Great review Firehawk. For me it is the 2nd best Kiss album (Revenge being the first one) but it is kinda weird since I love Ace and their early stuff. And also solo from Saint and Sinner, amazing work and it is done by some hired-gun.
    Firehawk2410
    Thanks a bunch! This only my second review, but hopefully I'll get around to most of their albums soon. And I'm in the same boat as you. I love Ace a lot (he's just amazing) but I found myself in love with this album even though Ace doesn't play on it. KISS seems to always be able to find the right people at the right time. And by the way, Vinnie Vincent actually plays on Saint and Sinner. I'm sorry I didn't go into detail with the session artists because it may have been too long.
    poland
    Great album and Revenge also Carnival of Souls are underrated b/c most people believe that Kiss is or was just a live show without substance (meaning writing good to great songs). Destroyer is still my fav. but the above 3 to me are very strong.
    MrBrineB
    This is NOT an 80's hair metal album....though they would migrate towards that style later in the decade. But Creatures is just a straight up metal/hard rock record. When this one was released...the styled hadn't really defined itself yet. But this is a great album anyway. I am a HUGE KISS fan and this one ranks in the top 5 for me.
    Firehawk2410
    I was afraid someone would say this, but it's kind of subjective when you try to define a whole album as one genre. And just because there is no name for a genre/subgenre yet doesn't mean it doesn't exist. It is hard rock and metal, but it's different than the hard rock from the 70's made famous by KISS and other bands like Aerosmith and Led Zeppelin, and it's not the same metal that Black Sabbath played. I think Creatures is comparable in sound to bands like Motley Crue who were also considered hair metal. That's just my opinion.
    MrBrineB
    You know...I don't disagree with you completely. I can see the points that you make. I've just never considered this album to be "hair metal". But...I do see how you can compare it to music that Motley did. So....you make a good point. Maybe it's just that I bought it when it came out and the genre was several years away. So my memories of the album are rooted more so in the VERY early 80s. And I was about 12 at the time. Anyway...I understand your points.
    Firehawk2410
    Yeah I get where you're coming from. Most of the stuff I listen to (like this album) was made before my birth, and so everything I listen to already has set labels attached to it as to what genre(s) it represents.
    MaggaraMarine
    I Still Love You is an awesome song. Maybe not a typical Kiss song but I don't think any song on this album is typical Kiss. I would go and say this is the best album from Kiss but not the best Kiss album if you know what I mean. It's really not typical 70s Kiss. It doesn't have that Kiss sound. But it's a great album. Just sounds different to their older stuff. But yeah, the guitar solos are freaking awesome on that song (I think they were played by Robben Ford). And it has a lot of emotion. One of the better power ballads I have heard. I like all songs on the album, it's a great album.
    warden.shram
    THE best KISS album! Just for everyone here, Bob Kulick DID NOT play on this album. He is often credited for playing on Danger & Keep Me Comin but these were actually played by Vinnie. In a 2011 interview, Bob admitted to there being none of his playing on the album. Mr Mister guitarist Steve Farris did the solo on the song Creatures, whilst Robben Ford played the solos on Rock & Roll Heel and I Still Love You. Song writer Adam Mitchell played rhythm and the final outro lick on the song Creatures.